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  1. Last week
  2. I must apologise for a typo in my response. The first appointment is 'LGR' (London Grand Rank), not Metropolitan.
  3. Troulligan - thanks for answering my questions, sounds like a can of worms to be sure!
  4. Earlier
  5. The joys of Apple computers deciding they know what you meant to type and changing what you actually typed. 😡
  6. In this province, the secretary alone fills in the returns for appointments and promotions but these are almost all factual: time since lodge mastership, record of rituals performed, outside community involvements and the like. Opinions seldom enter into the equation. Some other provinces work on the basis of lodge committee recommendations and that I feel is much more vulnerable to pejorative opinion. For what it's worth, I'm personally not in favour of the UGLE so called 'honours' system, because it is complex, has the potential for divisiveness and is to a great extent meaningless.
  7. I see the mention of Acting Ranks - should that, perhaps read Active?
  8. And that's the important part. If you're not happy with the Bible because of your particular beliefs, this clause applies. The Bible as the Volume of the Sacred Law, is symbolic - for example, if you lived elsewhere in the world for example, the VSL that's physically present/open in lodge, is quite possibly not going to be the same as here in the UK.
  9. But it's better than having the Lodge Secretary submit/approve his mates for promotion
  10. It's a long, complicated historical tale! Until a few years ago, lodges in London were administered first directly by the Grand Secretary and then after 1997 by the Assistant Grand Master. Nowadays, since 2003, they have been administered by a Metropolitan Grand Lodge. As to honours, Metropolitan Grand Rank is normally the first appointment for a Past Master of a London lodge. The promotion from that, is to Senior London Grand Rank. This is a very simple and straightforward system with which London masons generally approve. The active Metropolitan Grand Officer ranks are shown in the Schedule to rule 61 in the Book of Constitutions. There are no 'past' ranks in the metropolitan system. With some 1,500 lodges of around 50,000 individuals, to administer a complicated honours system, such as exists in the provinces, would be a complete nightmare.
  11. Points? This is not a game.
  12. Could I ask why London has just LGR/SLGR, yet the Provinces have a myriad of Provincial Honours? Why do the Provinces not have the London system? (Or vice versa) And... how long have the Honours system been in place? I'm intrigued (especially as I have recently received my first appointment as PPrJGD, dead chuffed).
  13. Very hard to give you a proper answer because you haven't explained what the problem is.
  14. For promotions within my District we use a points system. Max points is 1000. Requirements of points for consideration is 700. Being a member of HRA gives you 100 points. So nearly all Master Masons in my area are members of HRA.
  15. Thanks for the clarification... it is certainly the impression of many, still, though. Of course, I'm still well away from such consideration, although I do tick that particular "box" :-)
  16. It's no different from doing so in a law court. The following two of our rules set out this aspect: 3. The first condition of admission into, and membership of, the Order is a belief in the Supreme Being. This is essential and admits of no compromise. 4. The Bible, referred to by Freemasons as the Volume of the Sacred Law, is always open in the Lodges. Every Candidate is required to take his Obligation on that book or on the Volume which is held by his particular creed to impart sanctity to an oath or promise taken upon it. If you have a problem with either of these, then it would be a good idea to discuss the subject with whoever you are in contact with concerning your wish to join. That person will almost certainly need to take further expert advice, as this is a seriously fundamental requirement.
  17. To be eligible to become a Freemason you must accept belief in a Supreme Being and be prepared to take "obligations" on the holy book which governs your faith (not necessarily the Bible). If you're not comfortable with that, Freemasonry isn't for you. To put it another way - it depends on why you're not comfortable with the Bible. If it's because you have another religion, you can probably join. If you're an atheist, you can't (and it wouldn't suit you).
  18. Im.not comfortable swearing oath on the Bible. Can I still.become a freemason?
  19. Which is why I said it depends on which District/Province you're in.
  20. To clarify - I was talking about Hants & IoW, to which myself and Not quite so Uninitiated belong.
  21. Depends which District/Province you're in. An extract from a PDF on the web; The Honours will be grouped into four categories,  Acting Ranks,  Past Ranks, (First Appointments),  Promotions and  Mid year Promotions. Each Assistant should nominate Brethren for Acting Rank according to his allocation as identified in the Provincial schedule. Additional requests may be made but will not necessarily be accepted. This will be at the discretion of the Honours Panel and subject to the approval of the Provincial Grand Master. No Brother will be appointed to Acting Rank, [with the exception of Provincial Grand Steward], unless he is a member of the Royal Arch. The rank of Provincial Grand Steward is considered special and is for those Brethren who are 60 years of age or under and who show particular promise. A Brother appointed to this office will be encouraged to join the Royal Arch prior to any subsequent promotion.
  22. Not strictly true, certainly for the last 5+ years. Plenty of active officers around over the last few years with no HRA jewel.
  23. They are of course requirements, but if you aren't in the HRA, you don't get an Active Office.
  24. That's what I like about small provinces. It seems to me the large ones become administratively top heavy and rather impersonal, with a fair bit of brown-nosing!
  25. In London, as I understand it, promotion to LGR and SLGR is based on a points system. I imagine you'd lose a fair number of points if you're not in HRA, and several more for not being a PZ.
  26. In Cambridgeshire, the only Provincial offices where RA membership is 'required' (if I can use that description) are those of Deputy (we don't have assistants) and Wardens. For anything below that, RA membership is encouraged, but not 'mandated' - that pretty much ties in with Trouillogan's observations above; if you're committed enough to even be considered for those senior Craft offices, it's highly probable that you're also likely to be a PZ in RA - and probably involved in other orders too!
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